Let's face it, being a parent is not an easy job! Parenting With Purpose offers advice, reviews, and giveaways that will help you with all aspects of parenting.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

When In Doubt Give a Gift Card that Rocks!

Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 6:24 PM 1 comments
I love gift cards! Gift cards make great stocking stuffers for that special someone on your nice list. They are convenient and easy to use when in doubt as to what you should give a hard to please person.

Our family has a great tradition with gift cards at the holidays. We choose a deserving family and purchase a hundred dollar gift card for food as well as a few toy store gift cards to give at Christmas time. With gift cards a family can get what they want and we don't have to worry we bought the wrong thing.

Another reason I love to use gift cards is I don't have to worry about what to get my hard to please daughter. A lot of her favorite stores offer extra incentives when you purchase gift cards during the holidays. I love that fact because not only does she get what she wants I get a little something to put in my stocking.

Not only do I love to give gift cards I of course love to receive gift cards. I am hard to shop for so my family gives me a gift card every Christmas and birthday so I can buy what I want! I don't care for fancy jewels or perfume just give me a gift card so I can go crazy shopping at my favorite store.

Gift cards are easy to use. You really can't go wrong when you give your favorite person a gift card to their favorite store.

Gift cards aren't just for family. Give a gift card to your child's teacher. Teachers now have to use their own funds to buy classroom supplies. Why not play Santa and give a gift that keeps on giving.

Why not purchase a few gift cards for a local homeless shelter? They deserve a great Christmas. Why not take then shopping with their gift cards?

Gift your local food bank gift cards. Especially at the holiday season when pantry's become bare.

Don't be a scrooge. Give the gift everyone wants and everyone deserves. Spread the holiday cheer. 'Tis the season to be jolly...

Remember when in doubt this holiday season and you're in a rush or really don't want to fight the crowd pick up a few gift cards and brighten someone's holiday.

“I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Gift Cards Rock blogging program, for 6,000 My SocialMoms Rewards Points. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

For specials on great gift cards be sure to like Gift Cards Rock on FB.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Voting is Family Fun

Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 3:32 PM 1 comments

In my home our family takes the right to vote very serious. It's both a great privilege and

responsibility granted to every citizen of the United States when they turn eighteen.

Now that my grandson is almost eight, he fully understands the capacity of the voting process and wants to learn more. I've devised a few great teaching tools so he can be included in learning about our
country's governmental system.

My grandson is inquisitive and wants to know why about everything. When it comes to the whole essence of the voting process I try to make it as simple so he will understand.

We make learning about voting a learning game. Some of the games we play include:

  • Meet the presidential candidates: This is a great way to involve your 8-12 year old. My  grandson has learned who the 2012 candidates are and more about their platform.
  • What's my line: This teaches an older child more about what the presidential candidate does. Have you child write down questions to ask the candidate.  
  • Presidential candidate for a day: For older children let them pretend to be a presidential hopeful. Let them decide what political party they represent. This is a good way to discuss the different political system's in our country.
    These are only a few games you can implement in your home to teach your child about the voting process. You can adjust games to meet your child's need or let your child think of more great games to play.

    Saturday, November 26, 2011

    Care for Creation Book Review

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 1:08 PM 2 comments
    Written by Christy Baldwin
    Illustrated by Shelly Draven

    Care for Creation is a Christian perspective on saving the environment.

    My Review:

    Care for Creation is a delightful book for children. The message is simple and includes bible verses to help children learn to care for creation. It's an easy to understand book for children of all ages. It teaches how important it is to take care of the things God has given us. I give Care for Creation an A+. My grandson loves it!

    I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

    To learn more about Care for Creation click here.
    To learn more about Tribute Books click here.

    More about Christy Baldwin:

    Writing has been a passion of Christy's since she was very young. As a child, she loved to write stories for her grandfather and poems just for fun. She lives in Mason, Ohio with her family and is active in church, Boy Scouts, Girls Scouts and volunteering with various organizations. Christy has a bachelor's degree in Elementary Education from Cedarville University and a master's degree in Special Education from the University of Scranton. She is a stay at home mom who enjoys spending time with her kids and being involved in their schools. Her previous children's titles include Nine Things Nathan Noticed at Night and Remembering Wilma.

    Saturday, November 19, 2011

    Hasbro's KRE-O Transformers Make Holidays Fun

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 9:18 AM 0 comments

    Hasbro has done it again! This holiday season Hasbro has released a brand new toy Kre-O Transformers.

      Transform yourself and your family into a magical world of Habro's   Kre-O Transformers!

    Here are my top three tips why this is great fun for the entire family:

    1. The KRE-O Transformers sets will bring family's together. You and your child will enjoy hours of fun constructing transformers and playing fun, family games.

    2. The KRE-O Transformers sets are affordable for any budget.If you're struggling this holiday season this is a great gift.

    3. The KRE-O Transformers sets are not just for boys! Girls can have fun building and then destroying their own KRE-O Transformer.

    Here are a few of my tips for keeping everyone’s spirits bright during holiday:

    1. I love to spend the holiday's with my family, but it can become chaotic and stressful. One thing I've learned to de-stress myself and family is to play cheerful holiday music. One of my family's favorite songs during the holidays is 'Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer'. It's a classic, just like my family.

    2. When I sense my family is feeling down I love to cheer them up with a tree decorating party. When get out the popcorn and compete to see who can make the longest string of popcorn without it breaking. We can't stop laughing and forget all about being blue. Who wants to have a blue Christmas? Not me!

    3. Another fun way to keep your season bright is a family icecream social. We love to make homemade icecream during the holidays. My family experiments with different homemade flavors. Each year we add a new flavor. This year we are trying homemade eggnog. Some fun flavors to tickle your tastebud's and your family are peppermint crunch, spiced pumpkin pie and happy holidaze which is my favorite. It's a combination of your base ingredients plus chocolate covered cherries. Oooo, it's so good and will melt all your troubles away.

    So this holiday season when you're feeling down break out Hasbro's KRE-O Transformers and some homemade icecream for a night filled with family fun and cheer.

    Let Hasbro make all your trouble's disappear and enjoy the holidays creating a new, fantastic exciting world with your child.

    You can find out more about Hasbro's KRE-O Transformers sets here.

    And don't forget the most important tip for this holiday season: have fun with your family!

    “I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Hasbro blogging program, for 8,000 My SocialMoms Rewards Points and a KRE-O gift. The opinions expressed in this post are mine and don’t necessarily reflect the opinions of SocialMoms or Hasbro. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

    Book Review: 'Slippery Willie'

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 7:38 AM 2 comments
    Slippery Willie Synopsis:
    Willie Wiggles hates his slippery feet. He just slips, slides and spins all over the place. But what he hates even more are the special shoes that have been made for him that will help him to walk just like all the other kids. Willie thinks that they are the "stupidest, ugliest shoes in the whole world."

    Discover how sometimes we worry about things about ourselves when actually there is nothing to worry about in the first place.

    My Review:

    Slippery Willie shares a simple message that we all are different and that's OK because God made us that way. The book has some interesting points, but I felt a little awkward reading it to my seven year old grandson because everyone was making fun of Willie.
    I understand the message of the book is to teach children everyone is different, but in my opinion I thought it could have been handled better.
    I give Slippery Willie a B-.

    I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

    Larry Peterson Bio:
    Larry Peterson was born and raised in the Bronx, New York. As a freelancer, he has written many newspaper columns for local publications. Slippery Willie's Stupid, Ugly Shoes is his first children’s book. Peterson has lived in Pinellas Park, Florida for the past 28 years.

    Buy links:


    Looking for readers to share their thoughts about accepting differences at:

    Sunday, November 13, 2011

    A Few of My Favorite Scents

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 5:09 PM 0 comments

    Seventh Generation has created a line of dish liquids featuring natural scents from real lemons, clementines and lavender. Seventh Generation’s Natural Dish Liquid scents come from fields not factories, and honor the careful hands that cultivated them.

    I love the idea of Seventh Generation natural scents. One of my favorite scents is clementines. I love clementines and the memories they conjure.

    The scent takes me back to Christmases of my childhood. Clementines mingled with cinnamon warmed my senses and now everytime I smell the fragrant aroma's I am transported back to my childhood home and my mother baking fresh cinnamon buns or my grandmother sticking fresh cloves in clementines. The scents wafted in the air and through my memories.

      When I smell the strong aroma's wafting throughout my kitchen at Christmas I wrap my memories around family traditions filled with pine, cinnamon, cloves and clementines.

    I remember waking up on Christmas morning and being transported back into the childhood of my grandmother. A simpler time when scents filled the home and hearth, when pine, cinnamon, cloves and clementines where the centerpiece of Christmas.

    My grandmother would gather fresh pine cones and scattered them throughout the house. She would then sprinkle fresh cinnamon in the fireplace. It was a magical time, an aromatic memory.

    Before we were allowed to open our presents, she would bring out fresh cinnamon buns and hot clementine cider sprinkled with cinnamon. I guess that's why on Christmas morning we still have fresh cinnamon buns and hot clementine cider sprinkled with fresh cinnamon.

    My parent's and grandparent's are gone now, but the warm memories I still have from those long-ago Christmases filled with the fresh scents of natural pine, cinnamon, and cloves fill my heart and head with many delicious memories. When I buy fresh clementines it's pure pleasure. I can't wait to poke the cloves into them or make clementine cider.

    Clementine Cider
    About a dozen squeezed clementines

    Two dashes fresh cinnamon
    Fresh cloves to taste
    A tablespoon natural honey

    Bring to boil, reduce heat. Serve hot with fresh cinnamon buns

    I wanted to create a family tradition filled with the scents of my childhood. Those scents were a very important part of my life. We bake fresh cinnamon buns, gather fresh pinecones, poke cloves into clementines and enjoy  a natural scented Christmas.

      New traditions are great, but old traditions are wonderful. Share a scent-filled memory with your family today!

    You can find Seventh Generation Here
    Enter to win a trip to Italy, France or Vermont
    Seventh Generation on Facebook
    Follow @SeventhGen on Twitter

    “I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Seventh Generation blogging program, for a gift card worth $50. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

    Saturday, November 12, 2011

    Book Review: A Different Kind of Hero

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 10:42 AM 2 comments

    Written by: Leah Beth Evans
    Illustrated by: Colleen Gedrich
    Published by: Tribute Books
    Price: $14.95
    ISBN: 9780979504525
    Pages: 40
    Release Date: 1st edition (August 14, 2007)
    Source: Tomoson from publisher to review
    Ages: 4-8
    Purchase: Amazon | Kindle | Nook | iPad 

    Synopsis: The rainforest is under attack.One monkey is determined to save it.His name is Tomagochi.He’s brown. He’s small.He’s plain. But when a group of men enters the rainforest armed with bulldozers and axes, Tomagochi the monkey springs into action to defend his natural habitat.
    While larger animals like Peshe the tiger run and hide, Tomagochi charges into battle. Will he be victorious? Will the rainforest be saved? Join Tomagochi as he fights to protect his home and discovers just how special he truly is.

    A Different Kind of Hero was written with 4 to 8 year olds in mind, but I found this book to be entertaining for all ages. This book takes the reader on a great journey through the eyes of Tomagochi the monkey. In the end he learns he is special.

     I don't want to give away the ending, but Tomagochi realizes he's just as special as his rainforest friends.

    Although this grandma has a few misgivings about how Tomagochi saves the rainforest I give A Different Kind of Hero a B+ and would recommend to my readers.

    My seven year old grandson loved the book and couldn't stop laughing at the end. He gave it an A.

    I would advise parents to read the book first  to be sure if this is a book for your reading list.

    I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

    Wednesday, November 9, 2011

    Wordless Wednesday

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 3:40 PM 1 comments
    Grandson is Star Student of the Week!

    Tuesday, November 1, 2011

    Today I am a Guest Blogger at SPD Blogger Network

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 2:47 PM 0 comments
    Today I am a guest blogger. You can find my post here.

    Wednesday, October 12, 2011

    Happy Halloween?

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 7:38 PM 3 comments
    I'm a Christian and yes I let my seven year old grandson celebrate Halloween...
    Does that make my un-Christian or an evil person?

    No, it makes me human.

    Since Cameron was old enough to understand we've celebrated many secular holidays: Easter(with all the goodies) and Halloween.

     We don't go all out.
    Cameron doesn't dress up in scary costumes(not allowed). We limit where he goes and what candy he can eat.

    Mainly, we attend church Fall festivals...it's our Halloween tradition.

     Cameron doesn't mind(he enjoys the candy)

     Since Halloween falls on a school night this year, our trick-or-treat plans are still up in the air, but Cameron will still get his candy....

    We'll come home and watch 'It's The Great Pumpkin, Charley Brown and the new Disney Spooky Buddies dvd.
    So let your little ghosts, goblins and ghouls enjoy being a kid 

    As a Christian parent do you allow your child to trick-or-treat?

    Monday, October 10, 2011

    October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 8:09 AM 0 comments
    This month I have the opportunity to guest post over at We Are All In This Together.

    My post Domestic Violence Hits Home talks about the effect on the innocent children affected by Domestic  Violence

    Sunday, October 9, 2011

    October is Sensory Processing Disorder Awareness Month.

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 3:08 PM 0 comments

    My grandson struggles daily with everyday little things. At first we thought he may be autistic or have childhood bipolar. It wasn't until a few days ago a light bulb went on and now we know what Cameron has to face daily. Cameron has SPD.

    I have found a lot of great websites that offer a lot of great information for parent's of children with SPD...

    What is SPD?

    Resources for SPD

    SPD Symptoms Checklist

    Please if you think you child has SPD here are some great resources:

    SPD Blogger Network 

    SPD Support 

    The Sensory Processing Disorder Foundation ... 

    The Sensory Processing Disorder Blog 

    Wednesday, October 5, 2011

    Germs Germs Stay Away!

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 2:39 PM 1 comments

    Germs, germs stay away! That's the motto in our house during cold and flu season. With Lysol brand we don't have to worry about germs taking up residence.

    Before cold and flu season begins I purchase my Lysol and start spraying everything in site! The germs don't stand a chance!

    During cold and flu season I have to stay on guard with a seven year old in the house. Between school and home he picks up a ton of germs, but Lysol is a great cure for pesky creatures.

    Some great tips include:

    1. Spray daily with Lysol disinfectant spray. I tell my grandson it's germ-a-way.
    2. Wipe everything down with Lysol wipes. It's a great way to keep germs away.
    3. Wash your hand daily with LYSOL® Healthy Touch® No-Touch Hand Soap System. It's a great way to wash germs down the drain.
    4. Always sanitize with Lysol brand. It's the best defense against germ infestations.
    5. Keep plenty of Lysol wipes for home, on the go because you never know when germs will attack.
    6. Protect your family from germs by taking advantage of the many products Lysol offers.

    Lysol brand in our house is the beginning of the end for germs during the cold and flu season. No house can be a healthy home without Lysol. Our favorite Lysol brand products we love and can't live without are Lysol spray. Lysol wipes and the new Lysol Healthy Touch No-Touch Hand Soap System.

    My grandson is particularly fond of the no-touch hand soap system. Now I can't keep him out of the bathroom. He loves washing his hands and he knows he's also keeping nasty germs away.

    In our house Lysol saves us from the germs of cold and flu season. My family stays germ free during cold and flu season because we use Lysol brand has the first and only defense against pesky creatures that try to make their way into our house!

    My grandson goes around singing 'Germs, germs stay away, Lysol's here to save the day. Never come back to play!' and I have to agree with him. Lysol does save the day and keeps germs at bay!

    Don't be a germ infested house during cold and flu season. Take steps to protect your family and Lysol can help. Never be caught off guard, be prepared with the products Lysol brand has to offer during cold and flu season.

    “I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Lysol blogging program, for a gift card worth $40. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

    Wednesday, September 28, 2011

    Too Many Toys! What's A Mom To Do?

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 8:39 AM 2 comments

    Let's face it.... my grandson is spoiled. He has way too many toys and not enough room space. Toys are scattered from one end of the house to the other. From top to bottom toys have exploded.

    During Hurricane Nick season I have come up with a plan to de-clutter. I call it the out of sight out of mind plan. It actually works!

    Nick loves cars, but he has way too many, so I came up with a great way to store his vast collection. I took a heavy duty cardboard box and let him decorate it with anything to do with cars. Once he finished, we turned a plain cardboard box into a garage. So now instead of stepping on cars and breaking them, he can store them in his garage. He likes it. I like it...no more broken cars or toes...

    Nick also has a collection of toy men. He loves Rescue Hero's and won't let them out of his sight. This is a major problem. Toy men have taken over the house. There are everywhere, like hidden special forces. I racked my brain on how we could store his special collection, but nothing came to mind until my neighbor threw out old plastic milk crates. Voila! Nick and I gathered about five crates and spray painted them army green. We built a fortress for his “men”. Now they had their own special place and I was happy. No more assorted arms and legs everywhere!

    Now Nick's collection of toys doesn't end with cars and toy men...Nope! Nick collects trinkets. He loves little Happy Meal toys. He has so many he could open up a toy store. His collection was starting to get on my nerves I was ready to donate all his toys. This job was a tough one, where to keep these toys? The solution wasn't easy to solve, but Nick came up with a great game plan. He suggested all his little toys should be stored in fishing tackle boxes. Brilliant! What a great idea!

    Now, no more toys lie willy-nilly everywhere. They have their own special place. I can actually walk through my house without stepping on a car, a toy man or a trinket.
    It's amazing just how easy and simple it was to find a solution to Hurricane Nick's toy storm.
    We did it together and everyone is happy. He now has a garage for his cars, a fortress for his “men” and his trinkets now stay in tackle boxes.

    Nick also loves the new gadget Hot Wheels has come out with. Check out the new Hot Wheels Wall Track  It hangs on the wall for hours of fantastic, floorless fun!

    He also knows, if his toys don't stay put,what's a mom to do?

    Use these ten tips...
    1. Heavy duty cardboard boxes.
    2. Plastic milk crates.
    3. Fishing tackle boxes.
    and the other 7 are mine..
    4. Laundry baskets make great places to store toys.
    5. Wooden or metal shelves
    6. Lots of netting
    7. Foot lockers
    8. Under the bed
    9. Plastic baggies for smaller toys
    10.  Plastic trash can

    My motto is.."When in doubt, throw it out, if nothing else works."

    “I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Hot Wheels® blogging program, for a gift card worth $40. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

    Tuesday, June 28, 2011

    Is Your Child M.I.A.?

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 12:11 PM 4 comments

    Christian parent's aren't perfect!

    We try to teach our children good moral character and right from wrong, but sometimes we get caught up
    and forget to teach them action speaks louder than words.

    So also faith, if it does not have works (deeds and actions of obedience to back it up), by itself is destitute of power (inoperative, dead) James 2:17 AMP

    Christian children aren't perfect!

    Today's children tend to take everything for granted. They talk a good talk, but don't walk a good walk.

    They are missing their get up and go action.

    They are missing their let me lend you a hand action.

    They are missing their what can I do to help action.

    Christian parent's have raised a generation of lazy children who are missing in action!

    I know I'm stepping on toes with these words, but I've looked around at Christian kids and I don't see their
    actions in action. I hear a lot of talk instead.

    Parent's, you have to take action! You are obligated to raise a child of action, not just words.

    Instead of raising a  missing in action child you can raise a moving in action child with three simple steps:

    Move: don't be a sitter, be a go getter.
    In: instead of immobile, insist on empowerment.
    Action: get out, get going, get smart. 

    Don't raise an M.I.A. (missing in action) child!

    Raise an M.I.A.(moving in action) child!

    For further reading I recommend  Parenting from the Heights by Anne Wiggins and Linda Williams

     What are you waiting for? Get going!

    Wednesday, April 20, 2011

    Growing Little Sprouts

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 11:28 AM 0 comments
    As we get closer to the crucifixion(Good Friday) and resurrection(Easter Sunday) of Christ, I wanted to talk about Little Sprouts(children).
    Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.
    Proverbs 22:6 NIV

    I felt compelled to write about our children today. Our little sprouts need to grow in the direction of Jesus. They need to bloom where they are planted.
    And the child grew and became strong; he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was on him.
    Luke 2:40 NIV

    'The child grew...'

    When you plant your child, you want he to spout in wisdom and have the grace of God with him.
    Our children are the sprouts of Jesus...
    Plant them with care, show them how to grow in the Lord.
    Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.
    Ephesians 6:4

    Saturday, March 12, 2011

    Establishing Christian Parenting: What Fruit Grows on Your Trees?

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 3:29 PM 10 comments

    But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23 NIV

    What fruit falls from your tree? As a Christian parent is your child harvesting the Fruits of the Spirit?

    Children love fruit. They love apples, oranges, peaches, pears, grapes, bananas, cherries, plums and strawberries, but do they love the Fruits of the Spirit?

    God teaches us in Galatians 5:22-23 there are nine fruits of the spirit and we are to harvest them. Christian parent's need to sow the seed of each fruit and reap the goodness and bounty passing the harvest to their children.

    The nine fruits you need to sow with your child is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Each one of these fruits is an important aspect in your life and your child's life. Basically, these fruits when mixed together create an amazing Christian 'fruit salad'.

    For further resources I recommend Activities to Teach the Fruit of the Spirit , Fruit of the Spirit bible lessons, and Teaching Children about the Fruits of the Spirit.

    Remember, as a Christian parent you reap what you sow. You want your harvest to flourish not rot.

    I have taken each Fruit of the Spirit and created a separate page. On these pages you'll find helpful information and insight. The links can be found at the end of this post.


    © Debra Gray Elliott 2011

    Monday, February 14, 2011

    Be Mine, Valentine

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 9:09 AM 5 comments

    "Be mine, Valentine. I'll shower you with kisses, candy, flowers and cards." Is this the message you as a Christian parent want to influence your child?

    Saint Valentine's Day has become more of a secular holiday and lost the true meaning of love. Christian parent's need to teach their child about the real Saint Valentine and not Cupid. February 14th shouldn't be about spending money it should be a time to talk with your child about the true meaning of this day.

    Also, it's a great time to talk about the LOVE of Jesus. Read bible verses about love to your child.

    Remember, Cupid is a myth, but the Love of Jesus is real.

    Sunday, February 13, 2011

    The Three Be's of Parenting

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 4:15 PM 28 comments

    “Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”
    Waldo Emerson

     Parenting is not an easy job, but you and your child can survive with three rules every parent should follow. I call them the 3 Be's.

    Be positive: One of the first rules of parenting is to be positive. A child learns 99% of their behavior from his or her parent whether negative or positive and your job is to show a positive attitude at all times. Be a positive force in your child's upbringing and you'll reap the reward of a positive adult. A positive parent is the 'Be All You Can Be In The Lord' parent.

    Be proactive: The second rule of a well-oiled  home is a  parent must be proactive. Your child will learn from their mistakes, but only if you are a proactive parent. Your job is to teach them right from wrong and good from evil. Being a proactive parent is setting the stage for your child's adult life. Be a proactive force in your child's daily life and you'll see the difference a day makes. A proactive parent is the 'Be There, Be Aware' parent. 


    Be parental: The third rule is the only rule a lot of  parent's find the most difficult. Why? Parent's in general tend to want to be their child's friend instead of their foe. Unfortunately, a  parent cannot have the luxury of being their child's bff.
    As a parent your duty is to enforce the rules, not allow your child to break them. Being your child's parent is what they want and need. They may hate you today, but tomorrow your adult child will thank you for being a parent not a bff. A parental parent is the 'Be A Parent, Not BFF' parent.

    For further reading I recommend these resources:
     Positive Parenting: How to Be a Positive Parent
    The Power of Positive Parenting : A Wonderful Way to Raise Children by Glenn I Latham
    Proactive Parenting with Pastor Tracy Boyd
    Christian parenting resources

    Blog hops I'm linking to:

    Saturday, February 12, 2011

    Can Ur Child Reed: Illiteracy in the United States

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 2:01 PM 5 comments

    Illiteracy is a major problem in the United States. The number of children and adults who can not read is staggering. This problem is a concern for all parent's, but for Christian parent's illiteracy should go deeper than just someone else's child. As a Christian parent you should try to help alleviate this major problem facing the citizen's of your community.

    There are a number of options a Christian parent can do to help solve illiteracy in their city. The most important is to become involved. When you become involved you are helping and teaching your children to become better citizens. You teach them it's not alright to make fun of someone who cannot read. You teach them the value of learning. You teach them good citizenship.

    One of your main objectives as a Christian parent is to become involved. Involvement is the key to reading success.

    1. Volunteer: You can volunteer to help someone learn to read through your local library, your child's school or even at your church.

    2. Attend illiteracy forums: A great place to start is The Literacy Council. This organization provides many different resources.

    3. Provide books: One of the keys to reading success is the ability to have an opportunity to read. Many illiterate children and adult's have never read a book. You can contact RIF for more information.

    Christian parent's should address the problem of illiteracy with their children also. Get your child involved. Together as a family you can have a local book drive to collect gently worn books or have a fund raiser in your community and invite a local children's author.

    There are many avenue's to solving the problem of illiteracy and it starts with you.

    A great online resource can be found at U.S. Dept. of Education.

    Wednesday, February 9, 2011

    Establishing Christian Parenting: Giving

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 6:12 PM 8 comments

    I want and no is usually the normal conversation a parent has with their toddler, but a Christian parent should have another conversation as well. Christian parent's are bound by the Word of God to teach their child(ren) lesson's in giving. Instead of conversation's ladened with I want's and no's turn the negatives into positive's with I will's and yeses.

    Throughout your life you've heard the saying more than a hundred times, "It's better to give than receive." Now, you are responsible for teaching your child the true meaning of the saying. Because you want to start when your child is a toddler keep things simple so they will understand.

    I recommend first, teach your child to give at Sunday School and church. Tithing is a great way to begin to teach about giving. Remember, keep it simple. A small amount is fine to start off with, then as your child get's older let them decide to increase the amount they give.

    Second, when you are out with your child at a restaurant you may notice charity boxes. Encourage your child to deposit loose change. This will begin a great habit of giving without asking.

    Monetary giving is a great way to help, but also teach your child there are other ways to give. Teach your child to give back to the community, to the poor and needy and to serve the Lord with an open heart.

    As a Christian parent you can turn I want into I will with positive nudges in the right direction. Positive nudges will last a lifetime and teach your child to be a giver instead of a taker.

    For further resources I recommend Teaching Children to Give by Children's Pastor Leslie Bienz, First Coast Christian Center. This website list what to do and not to do. Also, a great book to study with your child is Giving: A Bible Study Wordbook for Kids by: Richard E. Todd.

    To get an early start in the giving process why not start with Shoe Box Ministries. This is a great learning tool and not only will your child learn the importance of giving, but they will learn a valuable lesson.

    How does your family practice giving? Do your teach your child to tithe, help at a homeless shelter or the needy?

    Tuesday, February 8, 2011

    Establishing Christian Parenting: Values

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 7:12 AM 3 comments

    The gap between secular and Christian parent's seems to be getting narrower, except in one area. Values. In today's society parent's teach their child(ren) values from the time they are old enough to understand right from wrong, but Christian parent's also have a moral responsibility to teach Christ-centered values.

    The core values as I call them are the basis of your child's code of conduct. The value's you teach your child equals their Christian character.You need to firmly establish the following core values beginning at an early age. Christian parent's have a duty to instill these core values that carry from childhood throughout adulthood.

    Respect, kindness, truthfulness, integrity and decency are the core values a Christian parent must teach their child. These values form their character.

    1. Respect: As a Christian parent you want your child to respect you, but this value must be taught at an early age. Teaching your child respect can begin as soon as your child understands the word no. No is usually the first word a child understands. Christian parent's can use this to their advantage. When you tell your child no explain the reason, reiterate and remind your child why. By doing these three simple actions you will gain respect from your child. Remember respect is a two way street. You must also respect your child.

    2. Kindness: Kindness is a core value that should follow you child thoughout adulthood. As a Christian parent when you teach your child kindness not only are you teaching them to be kind-hearted, but also to become better adults. Kindness can be taught with gentle reminders beginning when your child is a toddler. One of the first steps in teaching kindness is to hug your child. When you hug your child you set a positive example. You are showing what it means to be a kind person. Another step is service. Service is the most important aspect of kindness. When you show your child how to help others you teach them the true meaning of kindness. Remember show not tell.

    3. Truthfulness: Children naturally lie. As a Christian parent your job is to teach your child truth is always better no matter the consequences. This core value is probably the most difficult to teach. Children learn by example. It's like see and say. They watch what you do and repeat what you say. A Christian parent has an obligation not only to teach their child to tell the truth, but lead by example. Be truthful and your child will follow.

    4. Integrity: Actions, principles and expectations. These all are the qualities that make up the integrity of a person. For a Christian parent to teach their child the core value of intergrity they must also be accountable for their actions. Actions speak louder than words and a child actually hears what you do instead of what you say. A Christian parent cannot teach their child about integrity unless they are accountable and have moral principles. Principles are the key ingredient for teaching your child integrity. Without principles integrity is null and void in a Christian home. The expectations of the Christian parent is that their child will have integrity. However, for this to happen a parent must be responsible for their actions and not compromise their principles.

    5. Decency: This core value in today's secular society has been swept out the door.With televison, music and technology bombarding your child with corrupt values it's your job to teach them decency. As a Christian parent you may struggle with this core value. A Christian parent can feel guity if they don't let their child fit in with secular society. Remember it's not your job to make your child fit in with today's secular world. Your job is to make sure you teach them to behave in a decent manner wherever they go or whatever they do. Decency is a value carried over into adulthood. The most important teaching tool you can give your child is not to conform to secular beliefs.

    A great source for parent's is 60 Christian Character Builders.This biblical based website by World Bible Publishers, Inc list sixty Christian character building exercises Christian parent's can discuss with their child.

    For further reading I recommend Teaching Your Children Values by Richard and Linda Eyre. In Teaching Your Children Values Linda and Richard Eyre present a practical, proven, month-by-month program of games, family activities and value-building exercises for kids of all ages.

    I would love your feedback on the subject of values. Do you feel Christian parent's have a responsibility to teach their children a different set of values than secular parent's?

    Where I've linked up...

    Establishing Christian Parenting: Boundaries

    Posted by Debra Ann Elliott at 7:02 AM 14 comments

    Boundaries. From birth until high school graduation parent's set established boundaries for their children. As a Christian parent the boundaries you set have to differentiate from those of secular parents. Although some boundaries are comparable, a Christian parent's duty is to establish different boundaries for their child(ren).

    I interviewed several Christian moms for this article to get their take on the subject. Christian parent's believe there is a moral code in which as Christian's you should live by and a parent is not being too strict when establishing different boundaries. They desire to help their child become a better person. The mom's I spoke with also believe boundaries are set to protect children.They all agreed a Christian parent must encompass the following boundaries with their child.

    1. Entertainment: From toddlers to teens entertainment has always been a major issue. Television, music and technology are main concerns of Christian parent's. The boundaries regarding the three venue's must be clear and concise.
          Begin early: A toddler is like a sponge. They absorb everything they hear and see. The ground rules should be established as soon as possible in regard to boundaries for TV, music and computers. It's up to you to be in charge. Whether you choose to let your toddler watch television, listen to music or get on the computer the boundaries you set now will follow them throughout their lives.
          Stay connected: The boundaries you established when your child was a toddler need to carry over into the teen years. With television shows, music and internet that promote sex and anarchy a Christian parent must stay connected to their teenager. Boundaries need to change to reflect a secular society. What your child absorbed as a toddler is no longer part of their teen years. Television, music and the internet are now geared specifically toward the teenager. A Christian parents responsibility needs to also reflect this change. From twelve through eighteen boundaries are tested. Parents need to stay firm in their decisions.Your teen may hate you now, but remember the boundaries you set today will grow better Christian adults.

    2. Events: For eighteen years you are in charge of setting the boundaries to which your child will respond throughout their life. Christian parent's should have four concerns in the life events of their children. Friends, school, driving and dating need to be the focus of new boundaries.

          Establish parameters: Friendship is one of those boundaries that will cause friction if not handled correctly. Christian parent's cannot pick and choose their child's friends, but they can establish the parameters. Ask questions, be involved and the most important aspect; meet your children's friends' parents. You want to make sure whomever your child hangs out with is a positive influence. Where school is concerned parameters are basically already in place. The only option for a Christian parent is to make sure their child knows to obey the school's boundaries. As always, ask questions and be involved. Driving and dating have combined boundaries. When your teen begins to drive most likely he or she will also begin to date. Of course this is a major concern for the Christian parent. Your child is now sixteen and independent. Regardless, boundaries still have to be in place to protect your teen. Remember, ask questions, set limits and be involved.

           Define what is expected: Your child will test any boundary you set forth. A Christian parent must clearly define what is expected from their child. Are the boundaries concise? Are the boundaries realistic? A child needs to develop social skills through friendships, school, driving and dating. The boundaries you have in place need to clearly reflect this need for social skills. Christian parent's should make sure their child knows what's expected so boundaries cannot be compromised.

    For further reading I recommend Boundaries With Kids: How Healthy Choices Grow Healthy Children by By Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend. This book will help set limits for children and teach the concept of boundaries.

    I would love your feedback on the subject of boundaries. Do you feel Christian parent's should set different boundaries than those of secular parents?

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